United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon has made the organisation’s largest ever short-term humanitarian appeal, calling for 1.1 billion euros for the Syrian people.
The UN estimates that by next summer, neighbours Turkey, Jordan, Iraq and even Egypt will struggle to support a million Syrian refugees displaced by the ongoing conflict.
Inside Syria, aid agencies expect to provide emergency assistance to 4 million people.
“The exodus has reached more than five hundred thousand people,” said Ban. “It will grow in number as fighting rages, and in intensity, as winter takes hold. Neighbouring countries face a huge financial burden in sheltering and caring for them. The increasing peril faced by Palestinian refugees in Syria is another growing concern.”
Around half a million Palestinian refugees have made Syria home. Most live in the Yarmouk district of the capital Damascus, the centre of fierce fighting in recent days between government forces and rebels.